Saturday, December 24, 2016

Sunday, December 18, 2016


It might sound very interesting. I spent some time in Vijayawada with a company that makes Deflection Yokes in Gannavaram adjacent to the NTTF  Gannavaram.

The head office of this organization is at Mandavelli Chennai. 

I had a room mate here whose name I dont recollect. He is from Chennai. If you happen to read this please get in touch with me.


I have no direct connection between this legend called  Chitti Babu but for his son who was my room mate for one night at Hotel Citizen in Juhu Mumbai.

Perhaps it is in March of 1997, I was Regional Co-ordinator of  Zed Points at Aptech Computer Education in Bangalore and was called to Mumbai and checked into the hotel at around 6pm and was relaxing in my room overlooking the Juhu beach and suddenly the door bell rang and in came a Gentleman who was the Regional Co-ordinator of Zed Points in Chennai region who also told me is the son of  Chitti Babu.It was a nice experience meeting him and later a band of all of us had  a stroll on Juhu beach.

The next day was the conference Chaired by Ganesh Natarajan , Uma Ganesh and Pramod Khera. (Pramod is a first class gentleman in his conduct.).

A portrait of Pramod Khera

After the conference this room mate of mine (The son of Shri Chitti Babu) left that evening and I the next morning. I spent two nights in the hotel and he one.

Some how I happenned to remember him.I think his name is Sayee Chikapally. Contact me Sayee if you can. 

Friday, December 2, 2016


For nearly a month I taught at the Impact Polytechnic at Kodihalli near Bellary road and Hebbal.More precisely in January 1988.It was a nice experience.

Impact literally means  Institute for Manpower Planning and Career Training and is the brain child of Mr.Mathullah a retired Squadron Leader of the Indian Air Force.I used to enjoy a constructive relationship with this man during my stay at this place.He used to drive around in a white Ambassador car.

Recently I was in Vijayanagar and happened to meet a young  Muslim girl who studied Telecommunication at the Impact Engineering College  and immediately remembered about this place.

Mr.Mathullah used to be a creative personality with a lofty mind and always educated people who came into his contact. He had an assistant by name Mr. Chako who also was a retired Air Force person.

I used to teach  Material Science at this place and even remember a student Chankya Vyas.

Thank-You Mr.Mathullah for this oppurtunity and I used to have very long drives in the morning and evening from Doorvaninagar to  Kodihalli and back.There were no Ring Roads during this time.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Monday, November 7, 2016


VVG Reddy is an NRI based in Dubai  and is the vice-president of  AL-SAR traders. He has 2000 shares of the company and the base value of dollar 100 per share and the listed price for the share today in Dubai stock exchange is dollar 175.
Recently he has shifted base to Mumbai and has decided to sell the shares. He approaches a stock broker  Mr.Lakshmi Parayan who gave him some insight into the ways the share could be traded.
The share broker said that there are four ways in which the trading could be done. The broker can buy the share immediately at 20 percentage less than the dollar exchange rates with 22 percent tax on the earnings. The shares could be routed through the New york stock exchange in which case the transaction would take six months to complete where in the dealer commission would be 4 percent and the exchange rate would be 15 percent less than the dollar exchange rates and the tax would be 2 percent in India and 3 percent in New York.. the  third option would be to sell in the Dubai market where only 500 shares can be traded a month at 6 percent less than the dollar exchange rate with 7 percent tax and 6 percent  dealer commission for  every 500 shares. The fourth option would be to sell the shares through local traders who will only deal with 100 shares every month at 15 percent less than dollar exchange rates with 3 percent dealer commission.
Discuss the best option for Reddy that will give him best returns,

Assume dollar exchange rate as Rupees 65 per dollar and interest rates at 15 % per anum.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016


Consumer Economics is an area of Economics that studies Consumer Buying.There are many other forms of Economics too; like Business Economics ,Managerial Economics, Labour Economics and so on. Consumer Economics is the area of Economics that studies Consumer Consumption.

Business Economics is a subsidiary of Consumer Economics in many ways. Consumer would not buy anything for which he has no Utility. So Utility function is a very important component of  Consumer Economics.

One of the ancillary axioms of Consumer Economics is the Marginal propensity to store. When there is Consumer crisis of any kind there is Marginal Propensity to Store.

The Utility Function is a function of two variables. It is directly proportional to Criticality of need and inversely proportional availability of Substitutes.  Less the availability of substitutes higher is the Utility and higher the  Criticality  of need higher is the Utility.

Factors like Supply and Demand are influenced by the Utility function and hence Inflation and Deflation. Higher the Utility function higher will be the Price in the Price-Demand relation normally discussed in Economics. Increase in price could result in increased Demand a result contrary to conventional trajectories under the influence of higher Utility functions.

Monday, October 31, 2016


Reddy Nagar is situated in a posh layout  in the city of  Saralabad. The layout has some 3000 fully occupied flats of software developers who work round the clock. Naram-Garam  is a retail chain operating in Kolkata that wants to put up some retail outlets here. Assuming that you are a consultant for the project answer the following questions;

How many Retail outlets must be considered ?Why?
What should be the size of the outlet?
What are the products that the Retail must deal with ? Why ?

What kind of Technologies would be needed to make the outfit successful ?


  1. Bai Bai Agriculture pvt ltd is a venture promoted by Dr. Seema and has a Mango grove near Tirupati. It is basically a ten acre farm with some twenty full time employees with an export office in Mumbai  handled by Mr. Kaalia who has more than twenty years of experience in Import /Export.

The farm has been exporting Andhra variety of mangoes for nearly five years to South American countries like Peru and Brazil and also to countries like Australia and Indonesia. The customers were happy as these mangoes almost sold instantly in the fruit markets around these countries. The profits were high and even the Governmental agencies were happy.

But earlier this year the company got a letter from the embassies of most of these countries that some 10% of the mangoes were giving a pungent taste and also the color of these mangoes were becoming purple after some time. The company first thought the problem was happening in the containers during export but Dr.Triboovan ( a Japanese expert) detected traces of nickel in the specimen mangoes that were sent to him.

Water is pumped into the grove from a canal that is linked to the nearby river and investigations revealed that an electroplating unit started recently was dumping their waste into the canal periodically which was high in nickel content and the nickel content in the Mango could be traced to this.

Dr Seema is a worried person now as the next export consignment is due in another six months. A letter to the Electroplating company regarding this matter went unanswered and the  Electroplating company demanded proof of contamination to effluents from their plant. The electroplating plant is also pleading helplessness as there is no other drain for its effluents and the demand for electroplating is so high due to increase in industrial manufacturing around that electroplating cannot stop even for a day.

Answer the following questions;

1.      Could this problem have been foreseen by the Agri company?
2.      As an immediate measure should the Agri company focus on some new International markets for its mangoes.
3.      Do you think some new kind of fertilizer can arrest this problem.
4.      Should the company look for some new sources of Water?
5.      What should be the role of Govt   bodies in such cases?

6.      What short term and long term solutions would you suggest?


Yeralagudda  Prathipala  Gajaraja Reddy  is a powerful business magnate of Madanapalle who traditionally owns many business activities in this place under Srihari Corporation. His father Yeralagudda Srihari Reddy started this outfit. Y P G Reddy as he is called is a tall and stout figure and the public gave him the title Gajaraja after he pushed a wild elephant into the gutter with his muscle power when it came to attack the citizens of Madanapalle.

               Y P G Reddy during a visit to Germany met his friend Carlos Gunther who is an expert in Retailing who suggested to Reddy that he must start Retailing activity in Madanapalle and ever since Y P G Reddy was planning to launch more than one Retail outlet in Madanapalle. He hired a consultancy organization Bali International to study the population demographics of Madanapalle.
The statistics presented was as follows:
The place had a population of 25 lac people out of which 10 percent were above the age of 60..40 percent were between 60  and 40..25 percent were between the age of 20 and 40 and the rest were children. Roughly 30 percent of the population  within these age segments were female. There are no formal retail outlets in the place as of now. 60 percent of the work force is between the ages of 30 and 60 and 15 percent of the work force is female. National highway runs through Madanapalle and there are 10 major colleges in this place. Wani avenue…Mir road…..Shilpa cross…Nibu street are the major roads and they are some 5 kilometers from each other.

Some of the recent trends in this place according to market research is that Rice and dhal  are used daily by the population and forms a key component of daily life. 90 percent of the population speak fluent  Telugu  and 60 percent of the population speak English.

Y P G Reddy is actively planning to get into Retailing and  Akhila bank is willing to fund the entire project but he wants some answers before he gets into the venture.

According to you;
*What kind of a retail model should he adopt. Should it be a Super Market, Mall or a large Retail store.

*How many outlets should he plan for the entire place? Explain your logic.

*Identify some twenty products that the Retail Outlet would be successful in selling.

*Using some assumptions estimate the total initial investments.

*What kind of Marketing approaches must he use  ?

·        What kind of a Manpower requirement should he plan for and try to outline a organizational structure.


1.      Identify any ten Ethnic groups in India  and  explain their possible buying behavior with regards to a Large Retail store over a twelve month period. Make any assumptions that might be necessary.


 Gajaveera Simhagarjana Pulakeshi Reddy (G S P Reddy) runs a textile show room by name ‘Sweety Textles” in Praveen nagar. He basically deals with dress materials for Ladies and Children. He has one more such showroom in Shafqatpalya. The following table shows the individual sales at these outlets on a monthly basis and also the total consumer expenditure.

Sl. No.
Children items

Answer the following questions based on the data above;
1.Why do you think saree sales is lower  in Shafqatpalya?
2.If the company wants to increase Chudidhar sales..What should it do?
3.Why do you think is sale of jeans   higher in Shafqatpalya?
4.On which of these items is average price of item the highest?
5.What kind of Consumer behavior pattern emerges from this data.

6.Assume a family of Four ..two children and parents…what is the ratio of expenditure on Saree,chudidhar,Jeans and Children items at each of these outlets.


Reddy  Bank    is run by  two  brothers  Colombus  Reddy  and  Pema  Reddy and is involved in giving loans against gold deposits. They hire college graduates from prominent colleges for their branches which exist in twenty major cities of Andhra Pradesh.

The strength of  each branch is 25 employees…..10 employees work as clerks….another ten work in cash and deposits person is Bank manager assisted by four Asst.  Bank Managers. The basic compensation  is at par with most other banks  and the average age of staff at a branch is 35 years.

During the last month 20%  of the employees were irregular to work  and the general operation of the bank is being effected. Repeated warning notices sent by the HR manager  Mr. Danda was not correcting the situation and the percentage of such employees is likely to increase. This behavior of employees could not be understood and  Mr. Danda approached Mr. Reddy for some methods to solve the problem.

Answer the following Questions?
1.What could be the reason for such employee behavior?
2.What kind of Solution would you suggest for this problem?
3.What are immediate steps the company should take?
4.Should such employees be removed from service ?

5.What basic HR instruments and practices do you suggest.

Sunday, October 30, 2016


     Reddy Corporation is an industrial enterprise making ball bearings for the electric motor  market and has 100 workers on its rolls working on the shop floor. For every twenty workers there is a supervisor and the supervisors report to a plant manager and the company has a factory manager.

Mr. Sardar the marketing manager of  Insta brand of starters visit the company and offer their electronic starters to the company as a replacement to conventional starters used in fluorescent lamps used in the shop floor. The shop floor has some 250 fluorescent lamps. The starters are tested by the plant manager and gives an okay report to the factory manager Mr.Mirwani Giri.

The company decides to replace all the starters with the new starter and on a Sunday overtime electricians replaced all the old starters with new ones.

Because of the dusty environment and heat conditions….at least  ten of the starters were getting burnt  every week creating serious problems in the shop floor and some parts of the shop floor were not getting light.

After three months the problem was becoming even more serious and the workers made a written complaint to the CEO  Mrs. Sayeda Grace Shilpa in Chennai who immediately ordered the replacement of all the starters to the old format and the plant manager was suspended for one week.

1.      Try to identify User Buyer, Technical buyer and Economic buyer in this case.
2.      Should the company have replaced the old  starters..if not why?
3.      How do you think this confusion could have been avoided?
4.      What steps the company should have taken in the purchasing process?

5.      What fresh purchasing policy would you outline so that such problems don’t arise in the future.

Saturday, October 22, 2016


Keralite society and the larger world

An  agricultural society of the past grappling to come to terms with Industrialization and Services sector….crisp way of labeling Kerala as a society.

It is nice to study Kerala as a society..or so modern day Kerala which is a combination for all practical purposes of Malabar and Travancore.

To my observation this state is ailing on many fronts but is enduring the ailment silently hoping for a better tomorrow of some kind. Is it education that can act as a transformational force..or is it Corporatization….or is it Foreign exchange…solutions are being sought.
For most part of my life I have lived in the Karnataka state and was an observer of Kerala.Every time I see the monolithic Vidhana Soudha in Bangalore  I wonder why the state of Kerala failed to create such an edifice which leaders in this part of the World assembled almost after independence.

Every other day I watch Malayalam news channels and see protesters baring their chests against  Police using water cannons and involved in lathi charge and young people brutally beaten….inter party murders at other times..most of the time the Democracy of Kerala is discussing and swording such issues to the exclusion of many other which could add to the development of the state and the region.

Almost a decade ago I happened to visit an arrack shop in Kozhikode searching for a friend and found a huge multitude of people in the shop….that too in the afternoon. I was left wondering the amount of human energy being wasted which could have been put to constructive work.

Keralite society needs direction needs healing and short-term and long-term healing procedures out of its erring ways. If these are not implemented fast there could be economic take-over of the state by external forces. Something drastic has to be done to orient the state into more refined ways and tap and channelize the abilities of people for larger good.

Let us look at the history of modern day Kerala. Traditionally divided into many fiefdoms into conflicts from time to time and the ports of Kerala like Cochin, Kodungallur, Calicut and Ezhimala in the center of international trade mostly from the Arab countries and thereafter the European invasion through Calicut, first by the Portuguese and finally by the English. Add to that the control of Malabar by the Mysorean forces for nearly eight years and the socio-political changes there-of..and it appears to me by 1850 the English had complete control of modern day territory of Kerala. They were wary of Malabar but were better positioned towards Travancore –a lop-sided development policy the effects of which are even felt to this day. Note that at one time Malabar accounted for a large share of world GDP because of its trade in spices which eventually went into disarray for many reasons. Much of English administration was centered around Madras and many parts of Kerala were ignored or bore an indifferent treatment. The primary reason being that the trade in spices were replaced by the trade in Tea and Jute which saw cities like Kolkata ,Mumbai (Bombay) and Chennai(Madras ) growing in prominence and the state of Kerala as we see today nowhere in the fulcrum of Economic momentum. Keralites more so the Nairs and Menons of Malabar who found favor with the English were accommodated in these cities which created a brand of non-resident keralites who none the less owed allegiance to the state arising to some standing at the national and international level around these times. Needless to say names like Krishna Menon and V P Menon would fare in this list.

In post independent India and the growth of public sector found a bunch of people..a significant bunch..move into most key cities of the country and and the following opportunity to contribute dramatically to Economic activities of various kinds. This is interesting and far-reaching because it created a genre of people across most states who owed some form of allegiance to their native states and also add to this the post-independence phenomena of mass migration of youngsters to the Gulf..many of them settled there and also to be noted is the migration during the English era of people from this region to the Malaysian Peninsula to work in Plantations.Every thing mentioned above tries to trace the over-all contours of Keralite society as we know it.

Geographically speaking there is a problem that Keralite society was victim of. The Western Ghats on one side and the Arabian sea creating a narrow tract at the most some sixty miles in width restricted into motions only in the North-South direction.The Western Ghats has an aperture at Palghat called the Palghatgap which was the only known free entry zone into the modern state of Kerala..else it is a struggle to negotiate the Western Ghats.Few other state have these Ghats within the boundary..think of it for a second…Kerala is the only state confined by this range in Toto..a military disadvantage faced by the people, because who controls the Palghat Gap controls the movements into the Kerala regions and since ages in the face of Military conquest the people living within this region could easily be out numbered by any invader. This has happened on many occasions so to say adding to the woes of this state.

What are the far reaching changes adopted in Kerala in the recent past. Liberalization and privatization of Education.. meaning expansion of opportunities for professional education in the private sector. It is yet to bear the results it is destined for but in many ways can be treated as a welcome move that large educational platforms are created in-house and populace could travel to near-by cities for education and also add to that the economic growth that such sectors could create. The second change would be the effort  to create technology parks to grapple with modern day software eco-space.. yet to provide serious results but none the less a step in the progressive direction. The third would be positioning of Kerala more seriously as a Tourist destination which must be providing results.

I was watching with caution the efforts of the state at prohibition which could be seen largely as a political move. Prohibition implemented all of a sudden will have large scale social and economic churn and back-lash..any effort at prohibition must be gradual over a ten year period or so systematically decreasing the supply of liquor to the common folks and also increasing the price. If done all of a sudden it can lead to boot legging and other law and order crisis. I watch with dismay the large proportion of common folk standing outside government out-lets trying to buy liquor..such a phenomenon is unseen in much of the other parts of the country.

It is a weakness of the system of education both formal and informal that large parts of society land up into the habit of alcohol or similar substance abuse. Media time in all major media must be devoted for few minutes every day to encourage people into prohibition; the liquor lobby would be against this , but some trade-off must be arrived at for a more strategically firm social fiber.

Thanks to the mobile telephony and internet revolution the social composition of the working population is changing. Youngsters in their teens from all over the country can be seen working at various outlets in Kerala these days ;lads who adapt to Keralite ways quickly and successfully.

What should Keralite society of the future look like? It has inherited a troubled past and needs to leap-frog into a future that is fanciful and promising vis-à-vis the new world order.A daunting task but must be adhered to.There are no quick-fix solutions. But before we proceed any further it would be worthy to point out some of the constructive points as we see it. Keralite society has a vibrant and successful cinema industry which to my observation makes responsible movies to a large extent.. there has been constructive progress even in the other areas of fine-art..a responsible public that take keen interest in public affairs, sometimes it is over-reaction, add to that a media which has been keen to highlight issues of the common man, a tilt towards the Capitalistic model of society in the recent past, a more responsible approach to public assets, growth in infrastructure projects and also the ability to have adapted very quickly to the mobile and internet revolutions.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

My Grand Father Edakalon Karunakaran Nambiar photo

The above is the photograph of my Grandfather and below is me (a photo taken in 2013);Note the striking similarities.

Saturday, October 15, 2016


Having come to know from some quarters  that  Kerala State Road Transport  Corporation is troubled and is looking for ways and means to revitalise itself ….I thought  it necessary as a Corporate Consultancy  enthusiast to share observations and possible  solutions  from my experience and view-point. Earlier I was associated with  Corporate  Consultancy initiatives in Bangalore city handling  projects of System improvement  and  Re-engineering. That  KSRTC  has asked the help of independent  consultancy institutions to find remedies which is a welcome move and also a sign that the Kerala Government  is seeking professional involvement  to improve and augment  situations. I was listening to  Gita  Gopinath  the other day who is on a similar mission.

My own experiences  with  KSRTC. As a student at the erstwhile Regional Engineering College at Calicut  between 1982  and 1986  I used to use the Bangalore- Calicut service often. In 1982 me and my room  mate  S V Giri were stuck at the Calicut Bus Station because the 9:00pm bus was full and we did not have a reservation. We had to wait for nearly  five hours to board the Karnataka SRTC  delux bus at  2:00 Am. Many times on my journey from Bangalore to Kozhikode the  Driver and Conductor refused to give a halt at Kunnamangalam from where REC  was very close-by though I pleaded with them and emphasizing that I was a student….which means I had to un-necessarily go to Kozhikode and comeback to REC…a  round  about  journey that could be fifty kilometers. We used to prefer private buses  because they would give a halt at  Kunnamangalam. On another occasion  the night bus from Kozhikode to Bangalore broke down in Kengeri and I had to take a BMTC bus to reach Bangalore terminus. By and large the service was good I must say…economical on one hand and sufficient at the other at most  times. Two of my recent journeys with the  KSRTC has been awful. One by an Air-Condition morning bus from Kozhikode to Bangalore..the bus making rattling noise and the Air Conditioning device misbehaving in many possible ways and another night journey by a deluxe  bus from Bangalore to Cannanore…hell of a noise from all sides…..bus at over speed though under full control…..full night of engine noise totally preventing sleep and had the feeling of being cattled from  Bangalore to Cannanore. The reason why  KSRTC is in doldrums might be hidden in my experiences mentioned above. KSRTC is novel in many ways and needs re-definition and invention.
Note that the overall area of surface transport is an exciting one and set to grow.  overall economic scenario is encouraging but in many ways shows some kind of supply –chain patterns; which means the services are in high demand during some seasons and tends to dilate during the other. Such patterns can be seen during the days of the week and also note the possible increase in cargo. Lets note an interesting phenomena…every bus stop of one time is slowly becoming a full fledged Bus station and the number of commuters increasing along these lines. Roads are being widened and made more durable and new connectivity’s emerging. In such scenarios why is KSRTC under loss? The environment is encouraging but the realities pointing otherwise.

Many factors must be looked into to remedy the situation..some of these are obvious and some need analysis.But KSRTC being in the encouraging Transport sector would find it easier to emerge itself from the crisis it appears to be in unlike certain other Organizations and Institutions which are in restricted sectors and would need to be shelved or resources re-defined and distributed.

Let us look at the most fundamental equation of any Business so to say. Operating revenues must be greater than costs. Costs must be having many cost heads and less tangible but revenues on the other hand more distinctly measurable. Revenues minus the costs are profits. Either you increase the price or reduce costs are the two logical dimensions of Business. Some of these can be crudely done in some places and situations but would be complex in another. Also note increase in price would create a fall in demand. Assuming  a possible marginal increase in pricing the onus of profitability falls totally on cutting costs. How could  this be wisely done without effecting the values of larger society is the most important challenge facing KSRTC. May be the yearly budgets would very clearly indicate places where there is cost over-burden….some of them could be halved or totally obliterated.. which is a surgical solution which may not be palatable in a democracy.

As a professional who worked in teams for some time trying to find solutions for issues like these ..let me downsize my observations to some kind of a ten point program implemented over a period of time could give results of some kind.
1.Conduct Customer Satisfaction surveys once every three months to start with and then made bi-yearly. What generic commuters rate  and state must be validated and bench marked and improved. Existing employees could be used for this purpose and Quality Circles made who evaluate the progress periodically. Every minute aspect must be worked upon.

2.Implement six sigma style models to increase customer delivery.Every Station Manager at KSRTC bus depots must ensure proper commencement of services and also study delays , failures, breakdown and accidents occurring in his jurisdiction. Technology could be introduced to improve such delivery systems. Very crisply said Zero delays..Zero accidents..Zero skirmishes of any other kind. Six Sigma type models could also be implemented to improve ticket reservation systems.

3.Study of pricing models vis-à-vis competition and also induct flexible pricing systems…which means seasonal pricing.The price increase could be marginal but could increase revenues and cushion the situation. Also study the profitability of various classes of  bus services and price adjustments could be undertaken.

4.Re-engineering exercise could be initiated which would involve study of various processes and process times of all activities inside the organization.  Implement drastic improvement measures where ever possible.

5.Create a comprehensive Vision and Mission statement for KSRTC and display it at all major bus depots.

6.Continuous Marketing efforts must be initiated. This would need elaborate study. Positioning of various services, public relations, Customer value, Customer delivered value ,niche markets, punch lines, product lines, Sales promotion, internet marketing, routing and the like. A separate department must be created and maintained for this purpose.

7.HR or human resources efforts must be created and maintained. This would involve periodic training modules on technical and soft skills and customer handling.

8.Study technical issues through R and D division regarding fuel efficiency of vehicles and other vehicle related Scientific and technical issues.

9.Use KSRTC services to move light cargo across destinations. This is being done to my observation but must be made more viable.

10. System standards and upkeep of all Bus Stations to world standards.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Tuesday, October 4, 2016


 Firms in India are losing productivity because of Facebook. Office staff are spending too long on the social networking site. According to The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Assocham) employees use Orkut, Facebook, Myspace, and Linkedin for "romancing" and other purposes. On average, employees spend an hour a day on sites like Facebook. This reduces productivity by 12.5%. Nearly half of office employees accessed Facebook during work time. Some 83% saw nothing wrong in surfing at work during office hours. In September 2009 Portsmouth City Council in England banned staff from accessing Facebook on its computers when it was discovered that they spent, on average, 400 hours on the site every month.  
1. What is meant by productivity?  
2. Analyze the impact on a fall in productivity on costs.  
3. Analyze the possible consequences for businesses in India of banning access to Facebook and other social networking sites.  
4. Do you think access should be denied?